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Slow cooking is the key to a healthy winter + Rosemary and Thyme Chicken Stew Recipe

Written by Lee on . Posted in Autumn, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Candida Friendly, Dairy Free, Fast Your Way to Wellness, Fasting, Gluten Free, Heal Your Gut, Heal Your Gut Powder, Organic, Seasonal, Sugar Free, Wheat Free, Winter, Yeast Free

It's time fire-up those kettles into full gear, keep the soup spoon handy and pull the fluffiest blanket out from the back of the cupboard – winter is here!

Winter is a time of hibernation, where we crave comfort foods and warming drinks. But we're usually so busy keeping warm, we tend to spend more time eating, less time cooking and even less time working out - which inevitably adds to that extra winter pudge! (Hello... Heal Your Gut powder!)

But it's important to keep in mind that winter is also one of the best times of year to stock up on those essential nutrients and eat healthy.

My winter menu generally rotates between comforting soups, spicy stews, crispy stir fries, perfect porridges and spiced teas - all of which can be packed full of nutritional whole foods. Curries and stews are perfect for packing in your veggies and protein, but the misconception is that these delicious wintery meals take a lot of time to cook.

Enter your new best friend: the slow cooker!

Basically, a slow cooker does all the hard work for you, and they're easy to clean - which I know will have most home cooks cheering! If you're time-poor in the evenings, find some slow-cooker recipes - lamb shanks, curries and stews are perfect - throw the ingredients into the cooker, and it'll be ready for you at dinner time. 

Totally Totable Recipes for Workdays + Supercharged Bento Box and Nori Rolls Recipes

Written by Lee on . Posted in anti-inflammatory, Blog, Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Fast Your Way to Wellness, gut health

I know that after a busy day at work, the last thing that most people want to do is figure out what they should have for dinner, let alone lunch the next day!  Working for hours on end and trying to be healthy may seem like two things that don’t necessarily go together but I’m here to show you that healthy eating doesn’t have to be time consuming or over complicated. I’ve got some great recipes for you to take to work with you that are fast and easy to prepare.

Sometimes, the thought of picking up something on your lunch break from the local food hall or fast food chain might seem like the only available food option. However, pre-preparing healthy food for work can not only save you money, but it can also save you time in the long run so that you can sit down and enjoy your lunch that has already been made by you. 

Eating healthily and preparing meals to nourish can also help to improve your work performance, and it can be simple to prepare healthy food the night before so that you can just grab it and go in the morning. If you’re reading this and it seems to you like an impossible feat, I’m here to show you that healthy lunches can be an achievable change in your workdays and really, it all comes down to mindset. 

The number one word I’m going to use here is preparation.  Preparing food, the night before or even preparing a few meals on the weekend, can save a lot of time and unnecessary stress in the morning. I’ll often cook more for dinner and take the rest as a takeaway. For example, if I’m making a salad, I’ll take some out before serving and put it in a container, and then dress the rest. This means the next morning it will still be fresh and delicious for the day and then all it needs is a protein source like a can of tuna in olive oil which I put in my bag and I’ll take a lemon with me to work (I work from the local library) and then at lunchtime, I'll dress the salad from there.

I’d love to share with you two of my favourite "Totally Totable" recipes from my latest book Fast Your Way to Wellness.

The first is a scrumptious Bento Box and secondly my Vegie Nori Wraps which are fun to make. Not only are these meals simple to prepare and delicious, they’ll also make all your co-workers extremely jealous by how good they look! They’re easy enough to transport to work and will help keep you focused for the day ahead.

The Supercharged Bento Box is a combination of everything to satisfy you fully! There’s a section packed with protein, another filled with complex carbohydrates, the third with vibrant veggies and of course the last one has a sweet little treat. I like to keep my meals balanced and like most, love having dessert to look forward to.

Nori is the main star of my Veggie Nori Wraps. Nori is an edible seaweed that is low in calories and rich in protein, iodine and fibre, making it a perfect lunchtime mix. Nori is packed full of B vitamins, especially B12, which is hard to find in vegetarian foods. This simple seaweed is also high in minerals and amino acids to maintain health as it controls everything from the immune system to mood.

Supercharged Bento Box

421 calories per serve (1763 kJ)

Serves 1

This meal has saved me time and time again! It’s a little bit like a throw-all-the-good-contents-from-the-fridge-into-a-container and it will no doubt taste delicious kind of meal.  This is easiest to eat from a bento box or lunchbox with four separate sections. Once it’s assembled, just refrigerate it for lunch the following day. Easy!

Sesame slaw with tahini and orange dressing

  • 15 g (1/2 oz/1/4 cup) shredded green cabbage
  • 15 g (1/2 oz/1/4 cup) shredded red cabbage
  • 40 g (11/2 oz/ 1/4 cup) grated carrot
  • a few mint stalks, chopped
  • a few parsley stalks, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped spring onion (scallion)
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted in a dry frying pan

DRESSING

Combine all the slaw ingredients except the sesame seeds and put in a section of the box. Combine the dressing ingredients, adding filtered water as needed, then pour over the salad. Top with the sesame seeds.

Sardines with Lemon and Pepper

  • 45 g (11/2 oz) tinned sardines
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 lemon wedge

Drain the sardines and place in a section of your box. Season with pepper and add the lemon wedge.

Zesty Quinoa

  • 110 g (41/4 oz/1/2 cup) cooked quinoa (make this the night before or on the weekend and store in fridge)
  • finely grated zest of 1 lime
  • Celtic sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Combine the quinoa and lime zest, then season with salt and pepper.

Transfer to a section of your box.

Sweet treat

Put a small handful of berries in the last section of the box for dessert.

Vegetable Nori Wraps

181 calories per serve (758 kJ)

These wraps are satisfyingly simple. Feel free to make them your own – add any additional veggies you like to the mix! Packing these nori rolls for lunch will keep your nourished and grounded when you’re on the go.

Serves 2

  • 1 tablespoon wheat-free tamari
  • 2 teaspoons rice malt (brown rice) syrup or raw honey
  • 2 nori sheets
  • 1 tablespoon nut butter (cashew nut butter works well)
  • a few handfuls of baby English spinach leaves
  • 40 g (11/2 oz/1/2 cup) shredded red cabbage
  • 1/2 large carrot, grated
  • 100 g (31/2 oz/about 1/2 large) avocado, sliced
  • small handful of coriander (cilantro), chopped

Note; You can add a protein source to this recipe too, tuna or salmon is nice!

Combine the tamari and rice malt syrup in a small bowl. Lay one of the nori sheets on a clean work surface with a long side facing you and the shiny side down, then evenly spread half the nut butter over it, leaving a 3 cm (11/4 in) border on the top side.

Spread about one-third of the tamari mixture over the nut butter. Spread a tiny bit of tamari on the top side to help the wrap stay rolled up.

Put your desired amount of spinach on top of the nut butter and tamari layers, followed by half of each of the remaining ingredients. Be sure not to pile on too much or the wrap could break when you roll it up.

Roll the nori up away from you until sealed. Cut into three. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. Wrap in plastic wrap, seal in an airtight lunchbox and refrigerate until ready to eat.

I hope you enjoy these totally totable work day recipes.  Make them and let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Planet Organic: UK Book Launch

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog, Fast Your Way to Wellness

Uk book launch-2


For all my London and UK pals – this one’s especially for you!

Are you looking to lose weight, supercharge your energy and feel great?

I’ve got the solution!

I’m about to embark on my world book tour for Fast Your Way to Wellness where I’ll be speaking all things fasting, wholefoods and of course, getting my cooking on!

Intermittent fasting is something I live by and I can’t wait to share it with you!

My next stop (and one that I’m super excited about) is London where I’ll be returning to the beautiful Planet Organic store on the 22nd of March at Westbourne Grove for a book launch and cooking demo.

The health benefits of intermittent fasting are powerful and potent so get ready to be seriously mind-blown! I’ll be answering all your questions about intermittent fasting – the what’s, the when’s, the why’s and the how to’s!

By reducing calories on two days per week, you can kick-start weight loss, rejuvenate the body’s systems, repair cells and restore vitality.

Not only will I be speaking about the benefits of fasting, I’ll also be whipping up one of my favourite recipes from Fast Your Way to Wellness– my scrumptious Veggie Nori Wraps!

Vegienoriwraps_sml

I’ll be talking about lots of different low-calorie recipes that are simple, nutritious and delicious for those fasting days. If that doesn’t convince you enough, all of those who attend the event will receive a Planet Organic goodie bag! Hands up who’s in?

I’m so excited to meet you all there! So, come on down to Westbourne Grove for from 6:30-8pm on Wednesday the 22nd of March. Go onto Planet Organic to find out more or register here now!

Teacup Watermelon Salad 🍉

Written by Lee on . Posted in Ayurveda, Blog, Blog Breakfast, Blog Salads, Blog Snacks, Eat Right for Your Shape, Fast Your Way to Wellness, Fasting, gut healing, gut health, intermittent fasting, Organic, Salads, Seasonal, Snacks, Spring, Summer, Vegetarian, Wheat Free, Yeast Free

watermelon saladSeasons are one of life’s most beautiful designs. I love that as the earth turns and seasons change, there is a completely unique expression of foods and patterns that cause culture and behaviour to shift. In the depths of winter, the earth provides the perfect earthy foods that beckon to be served hot, whilst in the height of summer, there’s the miraculous provision of hydrating fruits that are the perfect solution to a searing heatwave. As a cook, I find it extremely joyous to work with what each season provides me, forming recipes that celebrate and compliment our needs and desires that change at different times of the year. This salad is from my new book Fast Your Way to Wellness.

In following an Ayurvedic philosophy, summertime can cause an overabundance of the fire element within our constitution, which explains why we can get so angry and irritable during a hot day. However nature has its wonderful way of providing the exact kinds of foods that calm this fire; balancing us out and bringing our mind and body back into a happy, ‘cooled down’ state.

The hot months can very easily cause dehydration within our bodies as we sweat more. Apart from keeping on top of our water intake, we can also work with the seasons and capitalise on some of the hydrating and cooling foods that are growing at this time of year, and base our meal planning around these foods. In summer, juicy hydrating foods like berries, cucumbers, tomatoes, mangoes and watermelons are in abundance, and for this reason they’re also really cheap to buy!

We are having an extended Indian summer in Sydney this year, yesterday we spent the day at Bondi Beach to soak up the last rays of the east coast sunshine. To me, summer just screams the name WATERMELON. I love the sound of a knife cutting wedges of juicy watermelon, and the sensation of an icy cold piece of its watery sweetness is something of pure bliss on a day of sweltering heat. Enjoying it straight up is a joy on its own, but I’m definitely a fan of a good watermelon salad! If you haven’t tried watermelon in a salad before, you’re going to be in for a treat with this recipe!

Sautéed Scallops with Mushrooms and Spinach

Written by Lee on . Posted in Blog Dinner, Blog Lunch, Dairy Free, Dinner, Fast Your Way to Wellness, Fasting, Heal Your Gut, Lunch, Organic, Recipe Book, Seasonal, Supercharged Food Menu

sauteed scallops picture

For many people, seafood is a restaurant food. Few people know how to prepare it at home, hands up if thats you! As for me, I used to be one of them. But I promise you- with an open mind, you too can create restaurant quality seafood meals in the comfort of your own home. It won’t cost you an arm and a leg, and if you have a good connection to your local fish monger, you can capitalize on the freshest ocean catch available.

You really can’t beat the light oceanic flavours of top quality, fresh seafood. The warmer weather beckons for feasts of seafood with friends and family.  It’s also a guilt free celebratory food- it’s seriously nutrient dense, and the perfect light meal option during periods of intermittent fasting. This gorgeous and light recipe is from my new book Fast Your Way to Wellness.

Seafood is the ultimate health food.  Dr Weston A Price, a dentist and researcher who travelled the globe studying traditional and native diets in the 1930’s and 40’s,  discovered that those who ate seafood had thriving health and wellbeing; thicker bones and better skeletal structure than traditional groups who just ate red meat.

It’s hardly surprising that seafood is one of my top supercharged ingredients. There are plenty of studies that link fish consumption, particularly oily fish to a reduction in cardiovascular disease. Foods from the ocean are wonderful sources of macro and trace minerals, and especially high in fat soluble vitamins A & D.

Rosemary and thyme chicken stew

Written by Lee on . Posted in Autumn, Blog Dinner, Dairy Free, Fast Your Way to Wellness, Fasting, Nutrient Rich, Organic, Seasonal, Spring, Summer, Winter

rosemary-and-thyme-chicken_sml

Winner winner chicken dinner!

Today I'm sharing one of the many fast friendly recipes from my new cook book Fast Your Way to Wellness.

Chicken is a staple in my house. I love all its parts, from the darker leg meat, a perfectly poached breast, or a slowly cooked thigh. The way it absorbs flavours and its impressive versatility means it’s always on my mind for meal ideas ranging from soups, roasts, broths and slow cooker delights.

Chicken is the most common type of poultry on the planet. It’s believed that chickens were first domesticated somewhere in India thousands of years ago, initially for cockfighting and later for meat consumption. From there, chickens spread to other parts of Asia, Africa, and Europe and eventually to the Americas; brought from Europe by the early colonists. In the U.S , we now see chicken popularized by fast food giants in the form of nuggets and fried chicken.

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